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Dodgers' John Shoemaker wins 2015 Mike Coolbaugh Award

John Shoemaker began his coaching career as hitting coach for Class-A Vero Beach in 1981.
John Shoemaker began his coaching career as hitting coach for Class-A Vero Beach in 1981.
Photo: Jon SooHoo | LA Dodgers

LOS ANGELES -- Longtime Dodgers minor league manager, coach and instructor John Shoemaker be honored at the winter meetings in three weeks, named Tuesday as the 2015 recipient of the Mike Coolbaugh Award.

The honor, created by Minor League Baseball in 2008 as a remembrance of the late Rockies coach, is awarded annually to the person "who has shown outstanding baseball work ethic, knowledge of the game and skill in mentoring young players on the field."

The award will be presented to Shoemaker on Sunday night, Dec. 6 at the opening night winter meeting banquet.

Shoemaker managed the rookie-level Ogden Raptors in the Pioneer League in 2015, his 35th season in the Dodgers' player development season, and his 22nd as manager. He has managed all five levels from rookie level to Triple-A and managed in nine different home cities in the Dodgers system — Glendale (Ariz.), Great Falls, Jacksonville, Las Vegas, Midland (Mich.), Ogden, San Antonio, Vero Beach and Yakima

"Past, present and future winners of this award have the distinct privilege on honoring the legacy of Mike Coolbaugh, who throughout his career displayed passion, determination and perseverance, all valuable traits for a professional athlete," Shoemaker said in a press release. "I am grateful to Pat O’Conner, Minor League Baseball, the entire Los Angeles Dodgers organization and most importantly, the Coolbaugh family for recognizing me with this award."

Shoemaker was also honored by the Dodgers in September as the Dodgers' captain of player development, presented with an award and highlight tribute video before a game at Dodger Stadium.

"I have known ‘Shoe’ for a long time and I can say without a doubt that he is one of the hardest workers I know," Lasorda said. "He continues to leave a great impression on the young ballplayers in the organization and I couldn’t be prouder of him on all of his accomplishments."